Interview: Eli Roth and the stars of ‘The Last Exorcism’ discuss making the unreal mundane

08.26.10 7 years ago

I’ll have my review of Daniel Stamm’s “The Last Exorcism” later tonight, but first, I wanted to share with you a couple of interviews from the other day, when I sat down at the SLS Hotel here in Los Angeles to talk with producer Eli Roth and stars Patrick Fabian and Ashley Bell about the movie.

Eli is a polarizing figure in modern horror, to say the least, but before I knew him as “the director of ‘Cabin Fever’ and ‘Hostel,'” I knew him as “that dude from Butt-Numb-A-Thon who loves movies.”  And no matter what, he remains an arden supporter of genre film in general.  He’s using his powers for good, producing films for other people, genuinely doing his best to bring original horror to the bigscreen and supporting new voices.  When I hear fanboys get upset because of who Eli’s friends are, I think they assume that was always the case, but Eli should serve as an inspirational story for them.  He’s a guy who worked his way up, who got to where he is not because of his friends, but because he threw himself into his work and hustled and earned that firs shot.  It cracks me up to see him as an actor in something like “Piranha 3D,” and I would think his appearance in that film would be a treat for fans and non-fans alike.  They kill him reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeal good.

Patrick Fabian and Ashley Bell are both new to me, which really works for the film.  It’s smart to put them together for the interviews, since much of the movie is a dance between the two of them.  This is not a film with a big FX budget.  90% of what you will or won’t find scary is simply performance, and it’s almost disturbing how sweet Bell seems in interviews, because in the film, she’s deeply, indelibly upsetting.

Which, of course, is the point.

All told, they seemed like they were all proud of the film and excited to have made it the way they did.  Without getting too far into it, I’ll just say they made some very smart choices, and when “The Last Exorcism” opens wide this Friday, horror fans would be well-advised to check it out.

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